Protests over prime minister's plans for new law on abortion


Thousands of people protested in Istanbul yesterday against the Turkish prime minister’s plans for a new law on abortion, a practice he has called “murder”.

Women of all ages held aloft banners with slogans including “My body, my choice” and “I am a woman not a mother, don’t touch my body” as they marched to the city’s Kadikoy Square.

Tayyip Erdogan sparked outrage among women’s groups and opposition law-makers last weekend when he delivered two fiery speeches in which he attacked abortion and caesarean births as secret plots designed to stall Turkey’s economic growth.

He said his governing AK Party was preparing a draft Bill on abortion and planned to enact it. He gave no details.

About 3,000-4,000 protesters, mostly women, took part in the rally yesterday. They blew whistles and chanted “AKP, keep your hands off my body” and “Tayyip it is none of your business”.

Abortion has been legal in the country since 1983, until the 10th week after conception.

Mr Erdogan has for years advocated families having at least three children. – (Reuters)